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Easter in Japan with a mouse, not a bunny

This post isn’t entirely original – I've mentioned my Japan Easter bunny theory before – but since I've become a prisoner in the ivory tower, it's either warmed-up leftovers or starvation.

Am I mixing my metaphors?

That would be singularly appropriate, given that the topic is Easter in Japan. This weekend the western world, be it Christian or not, celebrates Easter, but Japan, which has climbed onto the Christmas bandwagon with unbridled glee, remains oblivious to chocolate eggs, cute bunnies and fluffy chicks.

Mickey Mouse Easter egg in front of the TBS building in Akasaka

Why? Japan has turned Kentucky Fried Chicken into a Christmas meal and Colonel Sanders into Santa Claus; Japanese women think it's perfectly normal to get married in a white dress in a fake chapel with a fake priest proclaiming their nuptials; Japanese children have gone pumpkin bonkers for a Gaelic Samhain which eventually became a Christian feast called All Hallows' Eve; Japanese retailers have contorted a third-century Catholic saint "whose name was justly reverenced among men, but whose acts were known only to God"¹ into a guilt trip that persuades women to give chocolate to men, which is just about the worst sacrilege ever committed upon this doomed planet.

Gentlemen, I do not give, I receive. You worship the queen of Gondwanaland with offerings, not vice versa.

Yet Japan ignores Easter. This doesn't make any sense whatsoever, because – as I said in a previous post – all those bunnies and Easter eggs and marshmallow chicks provide an unlimited opportunity for kawaii-ing. The association of rabbits with eggs would cause a great deal of confusion, but never mind, there's already an assumption that Santa Claus is Jesus Christ's father.


I used to think Japan doesn't do Easter because it already has a bunny in the moon. When westerners look at the moon, they see the figure of a person, but Japanese people see a rabbit pounding rice. Rabbits are a common motif in art, on writing paper, on pottery, on sweets and cakes. This applies not only to Japan's lunar leverets,² but also to Beatrice Beatrix³ Potter's Peter Rabbit. You see the latter on cups, towels, doilies and dish cloths, which is OK, and alarmingly often on grown women's bags and clothes, which is definitely not OK.

This year, however, I've had to adapt my Easter theory, because I've started seeing eggs in weird places. I recently went on a walkpedition with Dru (objective, destination and alcohol consumption remain classified till further notice), and spotted an Easter celebration at the television company TBS in Akasaka.


Aha. If commercial television can persuade the manicured pedicured designer-clad suburban mamas of Akasaka that their precious offspring will have a deprived childhood without Mickey Mouse as an Easter egg …

Wait. Now even I'm getting confused. I'm still trying to figure out what rabbits have to do with eggs, and now we've got a mouse in the picture? Ah well, the mouse can warn the chicks that they should avoid Colonel Sanders if they don't want to end up in a Christmas bucket. Or some such thing.

If TBS can turn Easter into yet another consumer-driven must-have-or-else-I'm-a-bad-mother product, success guaranteed.

If you've detected a certain amount of cynicism towards a certain type of mother, congratulations, excellent powers of deduction. There are two careers, or personas, with which I cannot associate myself. I can imagine myself as just about anything, but not as a kindergarten teacher and emphatically not as a suburban mother. I'd commit global destruction within a week. If it makes you happy, bully for you, but ...

This? 


Oh goddess have mercy upon my nomadic soul.

Happy Easter, all. If you live outside Japan, have a chocolate Easter egg on my behalf.

Postscript
I haven't visited any other blogs for yonks. Sorry. Simply too busy, but will get there eventually.

Disclaimer
If this post doesn't make any sense, blame Mickey Mouse the Easter Leporid. My work schedule has been thrown for a loop under a freight train, and I've gone harebrained. I'm also bitter and twisted, so ignore me.

Notes
1) That's what Pope Gelasius I (who died in 496) said about Saint Valentine.

2) A leveret is a hare that's less than one year old. Bet you didn't know that. Now you do. You're welcome. (Yes, hares and rabbits are different, but you know I have a fatal weakness for alliteration, hence lunar leveret.)

3) Thanks for the correction, Tall Gary! "The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool and is happy to be edited."



A German poster spotted in Akasaka

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